This post was published in partnership with Pharmaca
Women have unique health concerns at every stage of life. Luckily, there are a variety of tried and true herbs that can help calm even the most irritating of symptoms.
Women have unique health concerns at every stage of life—fortunately there are a variety of tried and true herbs that can help calm even the most irritating of symptoms.
From balancing hormones to boosting your body’s stress response, we’ve put together a tailored list of some of the best herbs and their specific benefits to support women like you.
While menopause is a natural biological process, the symptoms associated with it - including hot flashes, or depression and anxiety - can disrupt your sleep, lower your energy, and affect your emotional health. Thankfully, there are many effective treatments available, including herbal remedies for menopause.
A perennial plant from the buttercup family, black cohosh is a popular natural treatment for menopause symptoms. Several controlled trials and case series have shown it to be beneficial in controlling symptoms such as hot flashes, mood disturbances, excessive sweating and vaginal dryness.
Premenstrual syndrome, or PMS, has a wide variety of signs and symptoms, including menstrual cramps. Some women have reported relief from these PMS symptoms with the use of herbal remedies.
For example, vitex, a shrub native to the Mediterranean and Central Asia, has a long history of use in traditional medicine for women with menstrual problems and is now one of the most popular natural treatments for PMS.
Numerous studies suggest that chasteberry may help reduce PMS symptoms such as breast tenderness, headache and irritable mood. Vitex also treats some menopausal symptoms, helps improve fertility and can calm hormonally induced acne.
A hardy plant from high-altitude areas of Europe and Asia, rhodiola rosea has traditionally been used to increase resistance to physical stress. Known as an adaptogenic herb, rhodiola also helps increase energy, stamina, strength and mental capacity.
Other studies have shown it beneficial for improving athletic performance, and improving sexual function, depression and anxiety.
This root crop grows primarily in the Peruvian Andes, and is a member of the cruciferous family. Also an adaptogen, maca is rich in nutrients that help support the body’s response to stress. It also has positive effects on energy, stamina and mood.
But its hormone balancing powers are what it’s most famous for: maca’s ability to control estrogen levels in the body make it beneficial for menopause, fertility, libido, PMS and more.
Cranberry is often used for prevention and treatment of urinary tract infections because it helps keep infection-causing bacteria from sticking to the walls of the bladder.
Note: If you’re going to drink cranberry juice, ensure it’s free from sugar (which can exacerbate UTIs), or opt for a pure cranberry supplement.